News and discussion about forest mapping and land tenure in the Congo Basin

Actualités et analyses sur la cartographie et les droits aux terres dans le bassin du Congo

New website launched to expose global protected area abuses

New website launched to expose global protected area abuses

Biodiversity and wildlife conservation is crucially important. But it has a dark side. From the Congo Basin to Kenya, India and Peru, Mongolia to Uganda, the designation of natural habitats as “protected areas” has brought dispossession, hardship and persecution to indigenous peoples and local communities who have lived there for centuries. It is to expose these abuses that environmental writer…

Read Article →
Is Mai Ndombe REDDy?

Is Mai Ndombe REDDy?

As the Participants Committee of the World Bank-managed Carbon Fund approves DRC’s flagship Mai Ndombe REDD programme, further evidence of customary claims over the area casts doubt as to who will benefit from the scheme. The Mai Ndombe ‘emissions reduction’ programme will potentially unlock $50 million in carbon credit purchases, which will require huge international investments to create in the…

Read Article →
New community mapping data exposes serious flaws in protected areas system

New community mapping data exposes serious flaws in protected areas system

New community data on MfR has provided more evidence of how protected areas in the Congo Basin have been superimposed over customary lands, raising further questions about how these areas are created and the extent of public consultation. Nearly all of the local villages located in and around the 714,000-hectare Tumba Lediima Reserve in Western DRC have now been mapped,…

Read Article →
The impacts of agri-business in Cameroon laid bare

The impacts of agri-business in Cameroon laid bare

Community mapping around new agricultural plantations in southern Cameroon has shown the extent to which the concession overlaps with the customary lands and resources of local communities, severely restricting their livelihoods and raising further fears about the impacts of agribusiness in the country. In 2013, RFUK’s Seeds of Destruction report charted how the Congo Basin rainforest is the new frontier…

Read Article →
Misty forest

Tropical Forest Community Mapping Initiative points the way to next generation of participatory mapping

Building on the MappingForRights initiative in the Congo Basin, the Rainforest Foundations (UK, US and Norway) recently undertook a global assessment into the feasibility of establishing a pan-tropical online interactive mapping facility of forest peoples’ lands. The consultation of more than 70 indigenous organisations and NGOs showed there is significant and urgent demand for the kind of tools developed under…

Read Article →
Landmark community mapping exercise can provide solid basis for community forests, land-use planning and development interventions

Landmark community mapping exercise can provide solid basis for community forests, land-use planning and development interventions

Communities have completed mapping of the Lukolela territory in Western DRC, marking the first time that customary tenure and resource use has been recorded over such an entire administrative division. A total of 73 communities with a population of nearly 120,000 have mapped an area of 655,000 hectares. This detailed picture of customary land tenure arrangements comes at a time…

Read Article →